Seaside, Oregon, and environs.
- Carole Kenyon
We're looking for good fish & seafood, Pacific NW cuisine, bistro food in the area. Also, for our first night, is there someplace close to the Portland Airport? We'll be getting in late (for us). Thanks!
Don't, under any circumstances, eat anywhere near the airport (well, maybe the hot dog truck parked over by the Columbia River that feeds that particular type who likes to watch airplanes take off and land)....it's only a short drive downtown, and if you want a true northwest meal, try one of these spots:
Greg Higgins combines a commitment to sustainable agriculture with a classic approach at his namesake restaurant (Higgins, 1239 SW Broadway, 503 222-9070). The salmon will be line-caught, the salad greens organically grown, and it will all taste wonderful (Higgins especially loves charcuterie, so check for any terrines, forcemeats, or pates). $$
For the best and largest seafood selection in town, hit the original Jakes Famous Crawfish (401 SW 12th, 503 226-1419; dont confuse it with Jakes Grill in the Governor Hotel, an inferior and smoke-filled poor relation). Check out the daily fresh sheet for specials, but take a hard look at the regular menu, too. The Stark Street sturgeon is a signature dish, and if you havent had fresh Columbia River sturgeon before, dont pass it up. $$
Scroll down the board to the thread that begins "visiting Portland" for the rest of a short list of real good restaurants. I also have a bunch of reviews of Portland eateries on my web site (URL below) or you can email me for specifics.
Seaside doesn't have many fine dining options, but lots of beach food that's not bad (altho' there's bound to lots that's awful, too). If the razor clams are in season, you might find fried-clam-on-a-stick, real chowhound fare and delish, too.
Gearhart, a short stroll north up the beach, is where old Portland money likes to hang out (and where James Beard spent his summers), and while I haven't been for awhile, there should be some better restaurants nearby. I'll check around and see what I can come up with, but you might do some searches for other web sites with Oregon coast restaurants listed.
It's not far from Seaside to Cannon Beach or Manzanita, both of which have a slightly better restaurant population.